Bahamas Man Asks to Use Market’s Bathroom, Ends up Stabbed in the Face by Store Employee
A Bahamas man’s visit to Florida turned dark after a store employee stabbed him in the face. His only crime: he asked to use the bathroom.
Harold Williams says he asked employees at a Pines Market store in Pembroke Pines if he could use their restroom and two clerks initially said he could, reports CBS Miami.
In relaying the incident which took place around noon on March 16, Williams explained that another employee accompanied him to the rear of the market, and as he made his way to the restroom, Williams felt an impact against his face.
Williams added that he initially thought the assailant, identified as Fawaz Hassan, punched him on the face but realized later that Hassan stabbed him around his left cheek.
“He had to defend himself and stabbed the victim in the face."
Williams was reportedly bleeding profusely from the stab and was only lucky to make it to a nearby urgent care in time. The attacked man eventually had to spend five weeks recovering from his injuries in a hospital.
“The only thing I asked was to use the restroom, and I was attacked. The man nearly took my life,” he said.
Williams further told WSVN:
“I tried to get out of there, because he looked like he was coming back to stab me again and the other guy who was with him, he just opened the door and said to me, ‘Never come back here again.'”
Williams, a Bahamas Air employee, is now being represented by an attorney, Jasmine Rand, who is planning to file a lawsuit. Rand said:
“There's video evidence that shows my client entering the store. There's video evidence up to seconds before he was stabbed and seconds after he was stabbed and it's very clear that my client was not committing any crime. My client was unarmed and this attack was unprovoked and completely unjustifiable.”
Rand is also insisting that the attack on Williams was “racially motivated” and plans to ensure that the prosecutor’s office investigates the possibility.
According to CBS Miami, the Pines market has been closed and Hassan, 24, has been charged with second-degree felony causing bodily harm. Per Atlanta Black Star, he was released from Broward County Jail on March 24 on $10,000 bond.
Meanwhile, Hassan's attorney, Eric Schwartzreich, claims his client felt the need to defend himself when Williams attempted to go to the back of the store, reports the Florida Sun-Sentinel.
In a statement, Schwartzreich countered:
“He had to defend himself and stabbed the victim in the face. It was not a random attack. He’s not a psychopath. It wasn’t done for any racial animus. It was done because of what [Hassan] perceived to be a need for a legal self-defense.”
There was, however, no evidence that Williams held a weapon or intended to commit a crime at the establishment, investigators insist.
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